All Saints West Ham, London/Essex - Monuments

All Saints Parish Church, West Ham, a little south of the busy modern centre of Stratford, stands within its calm precinct surrounded by trees. While today firmly within East London, historically, this was part of Essex, which along with parts of other counties was officially finally swallowed by the metropolis in the 1960s. The battlemented tower, of three stages with a taller turret at one corner, dates from 1400. The bulk of the Church is long, low, with outer brick additions of various dates. The original nave is of similar date to the tower, with some earlier work, and the aisles and chapels are mostly 16th Century. Inside, the main features are the arcades of the nave, with their early pillars and broad arches between, and the curved ceiling with black-painted beams; the clerestory is late 12th Century Norman.

The monuments are numerous – about 40 in all, and significant, including four kneeler monuments from the 17th Century, and the Foot and Cooper monuments each with a pair of full sized statues, cartouches and panels with fine carving and more kneeling figures from the 18th Century, and a fair crop of the usual white-on-black panels from the 19th Century, as well as a couple of Gothic revival panels. The early 18th Century monument to the Buckeridge Family is by the eminent sculptor Edward Stanton, and the Cooper statues have been attributed to Henry Cheere. From the 19th Century there are several simple panels by the monumental mason M.W. Johnson, and one of the Gothic ones is by the sculptor Henry Hopper. We take them in date order.

West Ham Parish Church of All Saints.

Monuments - 15th - 17th Centuries

Brasses

I did not see the one ancient brass in the Church, to Thomas Staples, d.1592, showing him with his four wives. There are several revival brass panels from the 19th/early 20th Centuries, typical of this type of monument:

Also in the Church

The West Ham font collection: Norman, 18thC, Victorian.

The Church contains a variety of interesting accoutrements and furnishings, and in parts is pleasingly cluttered.

Outside the Church

The churchyard around All Saints has been largely cleared, but at the front the monuments have been left in some profusion. Not much of sculptural interest, but there is one tall spike on a heavy base to John Henniker, d.1745, merchant of Stratford House, and his wife Hannah, d.1745, erected by their eldest son, John, 1st Lord Henniker, who has one of the most notable monuments in Rochester Cathedral.

There is a covered way up to the Church entrance from the edge of the plot; apparently this is remnant from the days when the better off West Ham parishioners were in the habit of arriving by carriage, and could in this way avoid being exposed to the elements.

Hennicker monument and covered way.

With many thanks to the Church authorities for kind permission to use pictures from inside All Saints Church; see the Church website at http://www.westhamchurch.org.uk/history1.html.

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Nearby Former Passmore Edwards Museum // Romford Road sculpture // Leyton Parish Church (1 1/2 miles north) // or further north to Walthamstow Church

Dagenham Church (eastwards) // Monuments in some other London churches

Introduction to church monuments // Angel statues // Cherub sculpture

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